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Alaskan Huntress Hillarie Putnam (Part II)

Hillarie Putnam 1
Here’s part II of our chat with Alaskan hunter and actress  Hillarie Putnam, currently available in the October issue of Alaska Sporting Journal: 
By Chris Cocoles
Hillarie Putnam knows she can hang with the guys and be just fine, thank you.
The 26-year-old big-game hunter, actress and docu-series television star still doesn’t understand why women who hunt like herself are sometimes questioned for their motives.
“Where did this idea come from that says every woman has to look (a certain way)?” asks Putnam, who recently wrapped up a stint on The History Channel bear hunter show, The Hunt. “If you play sports, you have to look like a man; if you’re in business, you have to look like a man. It’s this crazy thing. That’s probably why we’re so confusing to so many men. We have all these different elements to us.”
Don’t put any label on Putnam, who’s tough enough to take down a Kodiak brown bear – which she did on The Hunt – but also pulled off the role of Tracy Lord – the one made famous on the big screen by legendary Katharine Hepburn – when she was one of the stars of the stage version of The Philadelphia Story in Portland, Ore.
“Being able to play that role was phenomenal. The (character) has an affair on her fiancé the night before she gets married while she’s still in love with her ex-husband,” Putnam says. “You look at what she’s doing, and you realize the time period it came from is pretty long ago. We look at women who make those choices today, but we’ve been making these same bad and good decisions for years.”
Putnam has plenty to keep her busy in a hectic schedule. She co-owns a talent agency in Portland, Red Thread Entertainment, and is working with TV executives in Los Angeles to develop her own outdoors show from a woman’s perspective.
In part II of our chat with Putnam, the Wasilla resident, who splits time among Alaska, Seattle and Portland, talks about her earliest hunting memory, a once promising career in sports, acting and her ultimate dream job.
Hillarie Putnam 2
Chris Cocoles Can you share one of your most memorable hunting or fishing trips?
Hillarie Putnam I remember my dad and I went to Pioneer Peak (Chugach Mountains, near Palmer) when you could still just get a tag and go sheep hunting there. Now you need a permit. It was just he and I and I had super short hair; we climbed up, and even now he still gives me a run for my money when we’re climbing up a mountain. But I could not keep up then; I think I was 8 or maybe 10. I remember finally getting up to the top and pitching a tent. Every time we stopped we kept eating blueberries and he kept telling me how great it would be once we got to the top. This sheep and goat hunting is my favorite type of hunting to do. You get up there and it’s such a wonderful feeling. You put forth the effort to get there. And then you have all this stuff you can look down on. On that hunt we didn’t get anything or even really see anything. It was just the element of being above the rest of the world for three days where no one can reach you. I’d wake up every morning and my dad was cooking breakfast outside. You throw your stuff in a light pack, hike around the mountain range and come back. It’s such a special moment. You’re the only ones who remember it. We didn’t bring any smartphones or cameras of any kind. The only two people who remember that climb are my dad and I.
CC And you enjoy the roughing it too?
HP There were no sat phones back then and I didn’t grow up climbing with a GPS. We would go out and my mom might not hear from us for three days, and if we were weathered in she might not hear from us for five days or a week. You really missed the people you were away from back then. I don’t know if you miss people the same way. I went to (an outdoors store) and I thought, “This is wrong. This is not the way it’s supposed to be. There are packets of soda!” You are supposed to go out there and suffer. I miss what it’s like to daydream about a pizza. Then when you get back, you can have it.
CC How patient do you think you have to be as a hunter?
HP In Alaska that’s a big thing. A lot of (hunters) come from Montana or Michigan and they’re used to deer hunting from a (deer stand) or in a blind. There’s something drawing the animal to you. So you wait, but it’s not the same as it is in Alaska. If you hunt on ranches or have guides, there is a lot of wandering around and trying to find the creatures. But in Alaska, there are so many creatures, a lot of times it is just about finding a good spot and seeing what happens and waiting. It’s like moose hunting, which is calling them in and seeing what can come to you. And most of the time in Alaska when hunters aren’t successful they just don’t have patience.
CC You were quite the athlete back in high school in track and basketball, correct?
HP  I won the state title in three events and I did the high jump, long jump, triple jump and hurdles. I had colleges that had scholarships for me. I was looking at UNLV and Michigan State for track and field.
CC Were you a forward in basketball?
HP I played all five positions. I’m 5-9 so a little short inside, but I was an aggressive defensive player. What I lacked in size I made up for in aggression. I played some point guard too and I was a coach on the floor, for better or for worse [smiling]. I didn’t realize it when I was in school, but now that I’m older, I realize that I wasn’t a big communicator. I liked to wake up at 5 a.m. and go run or shoot hoops, and I kind of expected everyone else to do that. Now I realize that who wants to do that at that age?
CC You played lingerie basketball, like the Seattle Mist (of the lingerie football league)?
 HP Exactly. A friend of mine is the quarterback [laughs]. A lot of people said, “Well, that’s pornographic.” But it’s interesting. When I first went in there I thought to myself, “I have to be careful about what this is.” But these women were successful (NCAA) Division I ballplayers. These girls could play basketball and some of them are mothers and some are doctors. Every night after they get done with their regular lives, they come in and play this game but wear feminine clothing. And they look like beautiful women.
CC But acting seemed to overtake sports, and you went to college at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in Los Angeles. What was that like?
HP The school just focuses on having an entertainment career, and our final project for our career course was putting together an original (subject) that you think would do well in television. Everyone in the class and the faculty voted on the best, and I actually won. It was based on a female hunting travel show that went around the world highlighting different locations that had women who were standouts. And now, seven or eight years later, I’m hopefully able to write a show that will do that. The more you look back the more you realize everything you’ve done is preparing you for what’s about to come your way.
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CC One of your biggest movie roles to date was in The Frozen Ground, which had quite an impressive cast. How did that go with some Hollywood heavyweights?
HP The person who was the most fun to work with was 50 Cent (nee Curtis Jackson, who plays a pimp in the serial killer film that takes place in Alaska). He was remarkable. His persona is he’s this bad boy who sings dirty songs that people grind up to each other in the clubs. And then you meet him and he’s the most polite, well-mannered and sweetest guy; he’s kind of a little shy. But I was blown away by how professional and sweet he was. I was in a holding room with him and (co-star) Vanessa Hudgens. She was super bubbly with high energy, and it was interesting having that experience with them.
CYour big scene was with Nicolas Cage, but you had a memorable meeting with one of the other stars of the movie, John Cusack.
HP (Cage) just showed up and did it, and he had a big entourage, and a lot of them flew in and out to shoot their scenes. But Cusack, I had a very interesting interaction with him. There ended up being a scheduling conflict and the director told me to come down and hang around the set for a while. But there was a scene where I was just standing there watching the production. He gets up from the table and walks over to this pillar where I was and then he walks out the door. But he walks up to me as “the killer.” They yell, “Cut!” and he looks at me to try and figure out who I am. And he’s still in character and hasn’t flipped back to John Cusack yet. So I’m standing against the wall and I’m like, “John, this is really strange. I kind of feel like you want to rape me. So can you please turn on your other face to we can have a conversation.” But he was very sweet, and every little girl grows up with John Cusack in Say Anything.
CC Talk about the motivation to succeed that you seem to have and how it pertains to being Alaskan but with some Hollywood roots.
HP The kids I grew up with, they don’t seem to have average lives. Friends I went to school with, some are bush pilots and they have three different companies where they’re air-taxiing people around. They just have this intense drive and ambition. I think that’s why I liked L.A. There are big dreamers and they’re a little weird. I was just down there visiting friends, and they work five jobs and live in tiny apartments. And they truly believe, to their core, they are going to make something of themselves and there is something bigger than them. And that’s what I run into when I’m in Alaska.
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CC Do you enjoy the camaraderie of being outdoors with friends and family?
HP It’s always learning more about each other. Some of my best relationships in the entertainment world have been at Crystal Creek Lodge (907-357-3153crystalcreeklodge.com), a fishing lodge in King Salmon, Alaska, in the middle of nowhere. When the guests come out you’re up in the early hours to go fishing. You have crappy weather, but there’s something about the idea of being remote and cut off from the rest of the world. You actually have to look somebody in the eye when you’re talking to them.
CDo you have any long-term goals?
HP There’s this dream of Alaska – what Alaska is and what you can do there. And when you want to give someone the Alaskan experience, you kind of rise to living how Alaska breeds its humans to be. So that’s the ultimate goal for me is to have a lodge of my own.
CC What it is about Alaska that everyone loves enough to do TV shows there?
HP I think the reason why Alaska has been so on fire lately, (the outdoors) is all you have up there. I think people long for that. It’s wonderful for entertainment where we’re at right now with media and have information at the snap of a finger. For years and years – and I hope it will continue to be that way – Alaska is such a turn-on to so many people. If you talk to tons of people, it’s always a bucket list. If not to get hunting or fishing or snowboarding, it’s at least to go on a cruise. It’s untamed, and it’s fascinating to me that it’s still out there. 

 

Kodiak A Hostile Setting For Senate Candidate

Sen. Mark Begich (D) Photo by Wikimedia U.S. Senate candidate Dan Sullivan (R) Photo by Wikimedia

(left) Sen. Mark Begich (D);  (right) Senate candidate Dan Sullivan (R)

You knew this would be full of theatrics. U.S. Senate candidates Mark Begich, the incumbent Democrat, and his Republican challenger, former state attorney general Dan Sullivan, debated Alaska’s fisheries’ issues in Kodiak on Wednesday night.

Begich has made friends of fishermen throughout Alaska for his views, which include opposition to the Pebble Mine project, plus vowing to strengthen the state’s fishing industry. So it was rather obvious who was going to enjoy the homecourt advantage in Kodiak.

The Republican candidate, Sullivan, appears to be the choice to unseat Begich in the Nov. 4 election if those numbers hold. But Begich had his support on Wednesday, and it probably didn’t help Sullivan’s cause as the building’s villain after reports surfaced he tried to avoid the fisheries debate before agreeing to attend.

From the Associated Press:

It was a friendly audience for Begich, who chairs the Senate subcommittee on oceans, atmosphere, fisheries, and Coast Guard and entered the debate with the endorsement of fishing organizations such as the United Fishermen of Alaska and the Alaska Bering Sea Crabbers. At one point, Begich, wearing a gold salmon pin on his lapel, said he wouldn’t mind answering some of the questions that were being directed solely to Sullivan.

“Well, Senator Begich, we’ve heard a lot from you, but we really haven’t had an opportunity to question Mr. Sullivan,” one of the questioners, fish industry writer Laine Welch, said before asking Sullivan another question.

During the debate, Sullivan was asked about his brother’s fish business. He said his brother is a wholesaler who buys farm-raised fish as well as fish from Alaska. Sullivan said he is against genetically modified fish, known as “Frankenfish,” a position Begich also holds.

Sullivan said he has never supported the Pebble Mine, a massive gold-and-copper prospect near the headwaters of a world-premier salmon fishery in southwest Alaska. But he said he supports having a process in place for projects like that to be vetted.

Sullivan has said the controversial project should be allowed to go through the permitting process. He and others, including Murkowski and state officials, worry the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will veto the project before it has gone to permitting.

Begich — to applause — called the project the wrong mine in the wrong place.

When Begich said he planned to hold a committee hearing to discuss concerns about Canadian mines and their impacts on Alaska, Sullivan said hearings and letters don’t get the job done.

“Face-to-face contact, face-to-face diplomacy, that’s what you make an impact on,” Sullivan said.

It should be an interesting Election Day in Alaska.

 

 

USFWS Considers Elimination Of Invasive Caribou

Photo by Kristine Sowl, USFWS

Photo by Kristine Sowl, USFWS

There’s no room at the inn for caribou. The United States Fish and Wildlife Service is considering its options to help contain a herd of caribou that has found its way to an uninhabited island on U.S. Federal land in the Aleutians.

From the Associated Press:

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials say caribou swim from Adak Island, where they were introduced to provide sport hunting for military personnel, to uninhabited Kagalaska Island, part of the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. The agency proposes to keep a new herd from forming by killing caribou on Kagalaska with refuge staff, volunteers or contractors, starting next year.

Five caribou were shot in 2012 and up to 15 more may be on the island. Kagalaska is a wilderness area and caribou would alter it, said refuge manager Steve Delehanty.

“Things that belong out there ought to stay out there as much as possible,” he said by phone from his office in Homer. “Things that don’t belong out there ought to not be out there, as much as possible.”

Caribou would target the island’s lichen beds, trample other vegetation and create trails, he said.

“None of it is natural,” Delehanty said.

Adak is a 283-square mile island 1,300 miles southwest of Anchorage. The military built an airfield on the island during World War II and it was used as a Naval Air Station until 1997.

The nearest native caribou are 500 miles away. At the request of military officials, caribou were introduced to the island in 1958 to give personnel opportunities for recreational hunting.

When the island housed 1,000 to 6,000 people, sport hunting kept the herd to 200 to 400 animals. After the base closed, by 2012, the herd had grown to an estimated 2,700 animals. Their only predators are people, and hunters can shoot cows year-round.

Dropped: Project Alaska 2.0 Returns

Casey and Chris Keefer will use their survival skills again in the Sportsman Channel's Dropped: Alaska 2.0, which returns with new episodes on Friday at 8. (SPORTSMAN CHANNEL)

Casey and Chris Keefer will use their survival skills again in the Sportsman Channel’s Dropped: Alaska 2.0, which returns with new episodes on Friday at 8. (SPORTSMAN CHANNEL)

Brothers Chris and Casey Keefer love “roughing it,” and the Sportsman Channel’s series, Dropped: Project Alaska 2.0 provides a sneak peak into their world of survival in the most remote places.

The show’s season premiere is Friday at 8 p.m. on the Sportsman Channel. Here’s a release with all the details:

Award-Winning Series “Dropped: Project Alaska 2.0” Returns to Sportsman Channel, October 2 at 8 p.m. ET/PT 

NEW BERLIN, WI (September 29, 2014) Chris and Casey Keefer can’t get enough of being dropped in remote places with little food, little direction and only one goal: survive by hunting. They were first “dropped” in Alaska in 2011 and made television history by floating on a remote river for 28 days. Now, they are dropped again into Alaska’s backcountry in the Sportsman Channel original series – Dropped: Project Alaska 2.0 presented by Buck Knives. This version has them once again pitting their skills as hunters, woodsmen and anglers against an unforgiving landscape. Produced by Rusted Rooster Media, the original series will premiere exclusively on Sportsman Channel, the leader in outdoor TV for American sportsmen and women, on Thursday, October 2 at 8 p.m. ET/PT

Catch a sneak peek of the show by visiting http://www.thesportsmanchannel.com/shows/dropped/ 

The Keefers’ new Alaskan adventure began by traveling 80 river miles to their extraction spot while carrying only 100 pounds of gear each in their backpacks. They had no provisions – all their gear was for catching or killing their food and then preparing it. They are once again floating downriver to land that hasn’t been hunted for more than a decade due to predation.

Chris Keefer scouts in Alaska. (SPORTSMAN CHANNEL)

Chris Keefer scouts in Alaska. (SPORTSMAN CHANNEL)

“Dropped has proven to be a very exciting and adventure-filled program that Sportsman Channel viewers can’t get enough of,” said Graig Hale, vice president of business development for Sportsman Channel. “The Keefer brothers are entertaining, extreme adventurists who are also skilled outdoorsmen. The combination makes for a great television program.”

“The first two series of Dropped earned phenomenal coverage from both a survivor angle and hunting angle,” said Casey Keefer. “Our fans couldn’t get enough of seeing us suffer. We have to get our bodies – and minds – in serious shape before attempting these treks. It is a true test of stamina, grit and brotherly love.” 

Just like in the past, they make their way through perilous and game-rich country while attempting to call in or spot and stalk caribou, moose and black bear. The brothers also get more than they bargain for with charging grizzlies. 

“The grizzly encounters happen more than once and it is intense,” said Chris Keefer. “It is difficult to describe the rush of thoughts and emotions in that moment when it is just me, my brother and a cameraman literally stuck on the water in a floating raft with a sow whose only goal is to protect her family.” 

Learn more about Dropped: Project Alaska 2.0 at https://www.facebook.com/DroppedTV and on Twitter at http://twitter.com/DroppedTV.  Use the hashtag #BeAlive 

To find Sportsman Channel in your area click here.

About Sportsman Channel: Launched in 2003, Sportsman Channel/Sportsman HD is the only television and digital media company fully devoted to honoring a lifestyle that is celebrated by millions of Americans. The leader in outdoor television, Sportsman Channel delivers entertaining and informative programming that embraces outdoor adventure, hunting and fishing, and reveals it through unique, surprising and authentic storytelling. Sportsman Channel embraces the attitude of “Red, Wild & Blue America” – where the American Spirit and Great Outdoors are celebrated in equal measure. The network also is dedicated to promoting our nation’s military heroes and veterans, as well as providing a voice for conservation throughout the United States. Sportsman Channel reaches more than 36 million U.S. television households. Stay connected to Sportsman Channel online at www.thesportsmanchannel.com; Facebook, (facebook.com/sportsmanchannel); Twitter (twitter.com/SPORTSMANchnl and twitter.com/SportsmanPR) and YouTube (youtube.com/TheSportsmanChannel). 

Helping To Prevent Human-Caused Wildfires

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It hasn’t been a good summer for wildfires in the West.  So many fires are triggered by human-created reasons like burning cigarettes, so companies such as Green Smart Living/GEO are attempting to help prevent such issues by eliminating the combustible cigarettes. Here’s a release that will coincide with National Fire Prevention Week, which is Oct. 7-13:

GEO To Help Support National Fire Prevention Week

SALT LAKE CITY – Each and every summer, we all hear news stories of wildfires reeking havoc to our nation’s forests. To make these matters even worse, up to 90 percent of all wildfires in the U.S. are caused by humans.

While some of these fires can be contributed to unattended campsites, or a variety of other natural causes, many of these fires are caused by discarded cigarette butts. GEO (www.geocigs.com), a leader in creating a conscious living and environmentally friendly alternative to traditional combustible cigarettes, understands that this issue needs to be addressed.

By helping to eliminate the traditional combustible cigarette, they focus on helping reduce the amount of fires that plague our national forests, and even our own communities. “In one year alone, 900 people were killed, and 2,500 people were injured just because of fires started from cigarettes. If that wasn’t enough, the toll of human and property damage in these fires totaled 6 billion dollars. All of this simply because of reckless and careless smoking.” Stated GEO CEO Adrian Chiaramonte. This is one of the main reasons that GEO wanted to help.
In an effort to help support this worthy cause, GEO will be donating 5 percent of online sales to a local wildfire organization during National Fire Prevention Week. With this donation, the hope is that everyone will learn about the dangers of wildfires, and how preventing them can benefit us all.

GEO recently emerged as one of the leading environmentally friendly rechargeable e-cigarettes in the industry, and is creating a solution to the problems of the smoking industry though its GEO recyclable e-cig products.

Many people do not realize the environmental toll that it takes just to produce cigarettes, or the total damage that is done by improperly discarding the cigarette waste.

By helping people realize that small actions can make a big impact on our planet, we can help people live a bit more responsibly. This in turn helps everyone live in a place that is a bit greener, cleaner, and more sustainable.

Sources:

1)    http://www.nps.gov/fire/wildland-fire/learning-center/fire-in-depth/wildfire-causes.cfm#sthash.omlrCC1W.dpuf

2)    http://cynthiayeung.com/cigarette-butt-littering-infographic

Solving Alaska’s Chinook Decline

PHOTO BY KATRINA MUELLER/USFWS)

PHOTO BY KATRINA MUELLER/USFWS)

Laine Welch, one of Alaska’s go-to reporters for fish-related news, weighed in on the concern about Alaska’s struggling Chinook salmon population. 

 

From Welch’s report in the Anchorage Daily News/Alaska Dispatch:

“It’s not the freshwater production of the juvenile Chinook that is the reason this decline is occurring; it’s being driven by poor marine survival,” said Ed Jones, the lead for the initiative and sport fish coordinator for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

 “We don’t know why but once these juvenile Chinook salmon are entering the ocean they are not surviving at the rates they once did,” Jones added.“And at the same, we also are seeing younger and smaller Chinook returning to spawn, and this obviously results in smaller fish being caught.”

 At each river system, the Chinook team is estimating how many young fish are going to the ocean, refining estimates of how many older fish are returning to spawn, and tracking the marine catches.

 “That’s an effort to estimate the harvests of these 12 indicator stocks in detail,” he explained. “So we’re going to implement tagging programs on the juveniles, and as they go out to the ocean they’ll be marked with an adipose fin clip. We also will include a tiny coded wire tag in their heads, and those will be sent to the Juneau lab where we can tell when and where those fish were released.With those three components we can do full stock reconstruction.”

Jones said his primary focus is on the Kuskokwim and Yukon rivers because of the importance of Chinook salmon to subsistence users.

“A major part of this initiative is to make sure we can help those folks fish when there’s fish around and pull the reins back when they are not around. But we need to gather the information that allows us to do that accurately each and every year. We are trying to learn from the users and gather information on historical harvests, what the people know and what they’ve learned for centuries. We’ll feed that information into our stock assessment program,” he said.

Chinook salmon spend up to five years in the ocean, and production goes through up and down cycles. A few years ago, West Coast and British Columbia stocks were said to be doomed, but they have rebounded and are at record numbers in some cases. Jones believes that’s what will also occur in Alaska.

“The take-home message is that productivity cycles, and unfortunately in Alaska right now, we are at the low end of that cycle,” he said. “We are experiencing a tough time right now, but it will turn around so don’t lose hope.”

Teen’s 335-pound Halibut Holds Up To Win Derby

PHOTO BY HOMER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

PHOTO BY HOMER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

 

The youngster beat out the old fishing veterans. Recently, Idaho teenager Jackson Hobbs, 16, took the lead in the Homer Halibut Jackpot Derby with a 335-pounder.

Hobbs, who was visiting Alaska from his Idaho home, had his big fish hold up to win the derby and its $10,000 prize, plus a bonus for total tickets sold that should as much as double that base award.

From the Anchorage Daily News:

Hobbs had reason to be nervous. He said his grandfather, Tim, had already called a couple times before Tuesday to jokingly tell him someone had caught a bigger fish.

 “He’s kind of a joker,” said Hobbs, who lives in Franklin, Idaho.

 The derby officially ended Monday night at 9 p.m. For catching the largest halibut, Hobbs will win $10,000 plus 50 cents for each derby ticket sold, according to Jim Lavrakas with the Homer Chamber of Commerce. The exact figure won’t be announced until Monday, when final ticket sales are calculated. However, Lavrakas said Hobbs’ haul will likely be similar to the $21,281 taken home last year by Bellevue, Washington, angler Gene Jones.

Hobbs’ big fish had to withstand a big challenge when another whopper was brought in just three days before the derby’s end. Luckily for the teen, Randall Chadwick’s barn door weighed 301 pounds – a monster flatfish to be sure, but still 34 pounds short of Hobbs’ derby winner.

“That was a scare, but I knew 335 would be tough to beat,” Lavrakas said Tuesday from Homer.

Good for you, Jackson!

 

 

 

New Regulations Should Make Goose Hunters Happy

Alaska geese at the Yukon National Wildlife Refuge. (MELISSA GABRIELSON/USFWS)

Alaska geese at the Yukon National Wildlife Refuge. (MELISSA GABRIELSON/USFWS)

 

From the Alaska Department of Fish and Game:

Waterfowl Regulations for 2014 Include Good News for Goose Hunters

(Statewide) — Alaska goose hunters will be allowed larger bag limits this season, depending upon where in the state they hunt and what goose species they pursue, thanks to changes in the 2014-2015 migratory bird hunting regulations.

Canada geese (including cackling geese) and white-fronted geese – previously managed together under “dark goose” regulations – are now split into separate categories, allowing hunters to take limits of each species. For example, in the Gulf Coast Zone where dark goose limits last season were a combined four birds per day, hunters this year can harvest four Canada geese and four white-fronted geese per day.

Other changes to this year’s migratory bird hunting regulations include:

  • Increased bag limits for white-fronted geese in western Alaska’s Game Management Unit 18. Hunters there will be allowed eight whited-fronted geese per day and 24 in possession
  • Canada goose hunters in GMUs 6B, 6C, and on Hinchinbrook and Hawkins Islands in GMU 6D will not need registration permits this year. Registration permits are still needed to hunt Canada geese on Middleton Island.
  • A change to the definition of “edible meat” affects hunters who take swans, geese (including brant) and sandhill cranes. For these species, hunters must salvage the meat of the breast, legs and thighs (femur, tibiotarsus, and fibula). Salvage requirements for ducks and snipe have not changed.

Separate Canada goose and white-fronted goose regulations will allow additional harvest of white-fronted geese while maintaining traditional Canada goose hunting opportunities. Alaska hunters will benefit from this change which is primarily intended to increase the harvest of white-fronted geese in the Lower 48. The Pacific population of white-fronted geese has been increasing over the last 30 years, is well above the population objective, and has led to increased complaints of agricultural damage on wintering and staging areas.

Dusky Canada goose populations in the Copper River Delta and eastern Prince William Sound have increased from a low of 6,700 in 2009 to more than 15,000 in 2014. The three-year average population index used for management purposes is 13,700 birds. As a result, the registration permit program for Canada geese has been canceled in GMUs 6B, 6C, and on Hinchinbrook and Hawkins Islands in GMU 6D. The daily bag limit for Canada geese, including cackling geese, is four birds with possession limits of eight.

The Alaska Board of Game moved to expand the definition of “edible meat” with regard to swans, geese and cranes at the statewide meeting in March. The revision was reached in response to public proposals and testimony.

Waterfowl hunting seasons open on September 1 in many parts of the state and hard copies of the 2014-2015 Migratory Bird Hunting Regulations Summary booklet will be available soon at Alaska Department of Fish and Game offices and outdoor sports retailers. The new regulations are currently available online at:http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/static/regulations/wildliferegulations/pdfs/waterfowl.pdf.

Licenses and Alaska state duck stamps can be purchased online at: http://www.adfg.alaska.gov/index.cfm?adfg=license.main .